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Robert Ramey leads Wilhelm’s productivity improvement initiatives

Robert Ramey

Through insightful analysis and fostering a culture of communication, idea sharing and innovation, construction firms benefit from better methodologies and bottom-line savings when it comes to improving productivity.

Performing studies, collecting/analyzing data and planning changes are the easy aspects of productivity improvement according to Wilhelm’s dedicated Productivity Improvement Manager Robert Ramey. The challenge lies in changing states-of-mind and in convincing everyone not to overlook the small issues that oftentimes provide the most value in achieving results.

In just one year, F.A. Wilhelm Construction implemented small adjustments on four projects that equated to a $250,000 savings for clients. Identifying minor issues and making incremental changes not only saves money, it also makes the jobs of craftspeople easier, safer and, ultimately, more enjoyable.

Ramey focuses on improving workflows, project site processes and prefabrication solutions. For nearly a decade of experience, he leads innovative LEAN initiatives and is strictly committed to minimizing waste, reducing rework and implementing modern practices throughout the Wilhelm organization to reduce cost and increase productivity.

Demonstrating an early knack for process improvement and building things, Ramey attended Ball State University receiving a degree in construction management. He began his career as a Wilhelm intern on a large Indiana ethanol plant and, upon graduation, joined the firm permanently serving research and life sciences clients in a variety of industries. Ramey’s well rounded-knowledge and experiences led him to the helm of Wilhelm’s productivity initiatives to identify and remedy inefficiencies. By actively searching for leading indicators that signal upcoming issues, teams are able to take alternate actions that both alleviate inefficiencies at the project level and inform the organization for duplicative effects across multiple platforms.

Currently Ramey oversees project-specific prefabrication which helps control quality, mitigates trade-stacking, and removes field labor hours to shorten schedules on a project. Prefabrication also provides value enhancement solutions to deliver projects within stringent budget restrictions. Information collected and shared to inform practices and behaviors yields quantifiable savings to clients and their projects. Ramey has evaluated and refined project delivery for many of Wilhelm’s largest clients resulting in both strengthened processes and enhanced productivity for their teams.

Through implementation of efficient construction processes, Ramey’s work not only positively impacts Wilhelm’s clients, but also the industry as a whole – challenging them to work differently. He employs time and resources to develop and test methods of innovation and Lean Construction and shares his findings through Peer Groups and industry organizations.

“Once you can show someone a different viewpoint and then prove that it works – making their job easier and saving money – it tends to become infectious. Next thing you know, the process is applied to everything,” says Ramey.

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